After several years of construction, Kelowna's newest music venue is now complete and will be opening its doors soon.
Revelry Food+Music Hub is located on Ellis Street across from the downtown Library, and General Manager Ali Lewis recently gave Castanet a sneak peek inside. The two-story space will function as a cafe during the day and a venue for concerts and other events during the evening.
Lewis says the venue will fill a hole in Kelowna's music scene, which has seen a number of venues close over the past several years.
“This town needs it,” she said. “There's a lot of talent here and there's a lot of opportunity and a lot of reasons to come here, so having a place that has this level of sophistication and this level of ability to house music is beyond needed.
“There is a massive need for somewhere where it's not just working in a theatre situation, it is larger, but not as big as Prospera [Place] but also not as tiny as some of the breweries, and being able to fill that kind of medium-sized venue space.”
The space is expected to hold upwards of 600 people for concerts.
Revelry's opening is a long-time coming, with its development permit first coming across Kelowna City Council's desk back in August 2020. While Revelry said back in June that it would open this past summer, they were unable to make that happen, despite support from city council.
Not everyone in town has been as supportive though.
Last December, the strata corporation at the nearby Madison apartment building filed a petition in BC Supreme Court, seeking a stop work order on the project.
Strata president Lloyd Pederson claimed that by granting the permits for Revelry, the city did not do its required due diligence and caused "harm to 57 families for the benefit of one investor's profit."
A GoFundMe page raised more than $10,000 for legal fees to try and stop the Revelry project.
In formal responses filed in the spring, both Revelry and the BC government said the petition should simply be dismissed. It's not clear where that litigation now stands, but it's believed to be ongoing.
Revelry owner Lee Simon says he expects to officially announce an opening date next week.